Jan 042014
 

Paricutín, 50 years after its birth by Simón Lázaro Jiménez (Editorial Agata, 1994)

lazaro-jimenez-paricutin-volcanoOn February 20, 1943, Paricutín Volcano erupted in a farmer’s cornfield in Michoacjn. Simón Lázaro Jiménez, now a carpenter by trade, was just a young boy. Here, for the first time, an indigenous Purepecha Indian relives, in vivid and entertaining prose, his first-hand experiences on that fateful day and during the months that followed. Simple maps and 16 previously unpublished photos, including several by acclaimed photographer Walter Reuter.

Extracts:

“Early that morning when we reached the town all the houses were completely deserted, with their doors open but nobody inside. We went round the town three times and found five men reciting the Holy Rosary…” (p 14)

“The first flows of lava oozed out of the volcano’s mouth and formed a hard initial slope but this didn’t work as Nature intended. It only resulted in reinforcing the side, enabling the volcano to increase its height, which is just what happened.” (p 23)

“The greatest number of tourists always arrived at night because this was the best time to appreciate, in all its splendor, in all its magnitude, this marvel of Nature, and the volcano, as if showing off its immense pride, threw its fiery stones as high as possible. These same stones would then totally cover everything…” (p 27)

The author tells a compelling tale, and one which might never have seen the light of day had it not been for the generosity of Editorial Agata in arranging its translation and publication.

Softcover, 51 pages. Dimensions (in inches): 7.7 x 5.2 x 0.125 Price: US$10.00 (plus shipping, contact us for details)

Want to learn more about Paricutín Volcano?

 Posted by at 3:26 pm

Sierra Primavera (Editorial Agata, Fotoglobo, 2004)

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Jan 042014
 

Sierra Primavera. (Editorial Agata, Fotoglobo, 2004)

The Sierra Primavera (Primavera Forest) is an extensive forested wilderness area, with hot springs and amaxing scenery, very close to the city of Guadalajara, in Mexico. This book has dozens of color photos of the scenery, geology, fauna and flora of this distinctive area, complemented by short essays on each aspect written by subject specialists.

Softcover, 96 pages. Dimensions (in inches): 8.7 x 8.7 x 0.2. ISBN: 970-657-153-1. Price: US$15.00

Where is the Sierra Primavera?

Location of the Primavera Forest, Guadalajara. Cartography: Tony Burton; all rights reserved.

Location of the Primavera Forest, Guadalajara. Cartography: Tony Burton; all rights reserved.

Want to read more about the Sierra Primavera?

 Posted by at 3:04 pm

Guadalajara, Ayer y Hoy, by S. Gastaldi; Ruizesparza and Oskar Gastaldi (1998)

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Jan 042014
 

Guadalajara, Ayer y Hoy by guadalajara0ayerS. Gastaldi; Ruizesparza, Oskar Gastaldi (Author)

This soft cover book was published in 1998 by Editorial Agata / Museo del Periodismo y Las Artes Graficas, Guadalajara. A brief introductory text accompanies these superb photos of Guadalajara. About half the photos are sepia, the remainder are b/w.

Pages: 48 (almost all are photos). Language: Spanish. Price: US$15.00 (plus shipping, contact us for details)

 Posted by at 3:02 pm

Tonalá: Raíces que perduran (Living Roots), bilingual edition (Editorial Agata 1994)

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Jan 042014
 

Tonalá: Raíces que perduran (Living Roots), bilingual edition (Editorial Agata 1994)

tonala-raices32 pages, Text by Gutierre Aceves Piña; translation by Tony Burton.

Brief text introduces the various types of ceramic art that have put the town of Tonalá in Jalisco firmly on the tourist arts and crafts map. The book is lavishly illustrated with 17 full-color photos, many of them full-page.

Used. Very hard to find. Price US$15.00 (plus shipping, contact us for details}

 

 Posted by at 2:44 pm

Viva Mexico! by Charles Macomb Flandrau (Eland reprint 1982)

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Jan 042014
 

Viva Mexico! by Charles Macomb Flandrau (Eland reprint 1982)

flandrauThis is a reprint of Charles Macomb Flandrau’s classic book, Viva Mexico! A traveller’s account of life in Mexico, first published in 1908 with a new preface by Nicholas Shakespeare.

“After leaving Harvard, Charles Flandrau (1871-1938) made several journeys to Mexico where he used his brother’s coffee farm as a base. From these experiences he gathered the material for Viva Mexico! which was published in 1908. It was immediately recognized as a classic and since then has been in constant demand by the American reading public.” (back cover text).

Sybille Bedford, another outstanding travel writer on Mexico, described this book as “the most enchanting, as well as extremely funny book on Mexico.”

Used book. 294 pages. Spine slightly faded; otherwise very good condition. Price: US$12.00 (plus shipping, contact us for details)

 Posted by at 2:24 pm

La Ruta de Occidente: Las Ciudades de Toluca y Morelia, by Pablo C. de. Gante (1939)

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Jan 042014
 

La Ruta de Occidente: Las Ciudades de Toluca y Morelia, a soft cover book by Pablo C. de. Gante (Mexico, D.F.: DAPP, 1939)

Paperback: 95 pages
Publisher: Mexico, D.F.: DAPP (1939)
Language: Spanish

Very hard-to-find early guidebook to Mexico’s Highway 15, one of the country’s most scenic highways. This book has detailed descriptions, accompanied by numerous maps and b/w photos of the section from Mexico City to Morelia, the state capital of Michoacán.

Used. Price US$10.00 (plus shipping; contact us for details)

 Posted by at 2:09 pm
Jan 042014
 

Outdoors in Western Mexico, by John and Susy Pint (2nd edition 2011).

pints-coverArt and Cartoons by Jesús Moreno; graphic Design by Jesús García Arámbula.

212 pages. 41 maps.14 color photos. Too many drawings and cartoons to count.

This user-friendly book contains details of forty scenic places to camp, hike or picnic within a few hours of Guadalajara and Lake Chapala. Short descriptions include trail landmarks and background information. A very hard to find book!

Published by Quadrimag, S.A.de C.V. in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico. Price: US $20.00 plus shipping (contact us for details)

“For decades now, the Pints — who live in Zapopan, Jalisco — have wandered off-the-beaten paths in search of the beautiful and the mysterious and the interesting. And in this book they have gathered articles they have written about rivers and canyons, caves, volcanoes (both active and inactive), hot (and cold) springs, waterfalls, petroglyphs, pre-Columbian tombs, circular pyramids, boiling mud pots, even poltergeists, and exotic flora and fauna… all within a few hours of Guadalajara.” (MexConnect)

Need to learn more about this book?

 Posted by at 1:55 pm

Juan Rulfo and The South of Jalisco, by Wolfgang Vogt (1995)

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Jan 042014
 

Juan Rulfo and The South of Jalisco by Wolfgang Vogt (Editorial Agata, 1995).

Extended essay by Dr. Volfgang Vogt, translated by Tony Burton. This book is a detailed look at the work of one of Mexico’s foremost novelists, and its place in the school of regional literature. Includes 32 black & white photos (by Juan Rulfo) and bibliography.

ISBN 968-7310-56-1. Softcover, 81 pages. Dimensions (in inches): 7.6 x 5.2 x 0.25. Price: $10.00 (plus shipping; contact us for options/details)

The southern part of Jalisco, only a few hours’ drive from Lake Chapala, epitomizes many people’s idea of the “real Mexico”. This extended essay on the work of Juan Rulfo, one of Mexico’s most famous novelists, examines how his writing is a superb example of the school of regional literature. Rulfo was also an accomplished photographer and the book includes 32 of his black & white photos and a bibliography.

Related books:

  • San Gabriel,  Editorial Agata / Fotoglobo, 2004. This is the area forever associated with famous Mexican novelist Juan Rulfo. Includes numerous color photos of San Gabriel, Piedras Niñas, Jiquilpan, Buenavista, Salsipuedes, Telcampana, Totolimispa and San José.

Related posts:

 Posted by at 1:44 pm

San Gabriel, Editorial Agata / Fotoglobo, 2004

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Jan 042014
 

San Gabriel  (Editorial Agata/Fotoglobo, 2004).

san-gabrielSan Gabriel (formerly Venustiano Carranza – this is the name still used on many maps) is a municipality close to Sayula and Cd. Guzmán in Jalisco, Mexico.

This book features color photos of the numerous small hamlets, haciendas, villages and landscapes of the area around San Gabriel. Places described include San Gabriel, Piedras Niñas, Jiquilpan, Buenavista, Salsipuedes, Telcampana, Totolimispa and San José. This is an area forever associated with world famous Mexican novelist Juan Rulfo.

Softcover, 96 pages. Dimensions (in inches): 8.7 x 8.7 x 0.2 ISBN: 970-657-139-6  Price: US$20.00 [plus shipping; contact us for options/details]

Related books:

 Posted by at 1:12 pm

A House Far South in Mexico by Elaine Dandh (Perception Press 2000)

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Jan 042014
 

A House Far South in Mexico by Elaine Dandh. (Perception Press 2000).

Loosely modeled on the best-selling Year in Provence, this is a blow-by-blow account, from the perspective of the woman of the house, of one couple’s adjustment to moving to Mexico to live.

Softcover, 271 pages. Dimensions (in inches): 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.6 Price: US$20.00

Synopis:

On one grey November day in New England, knowing nothing at all of what they were getting into, the narrator and her husband, His Himship, moved to Mexico. In their first year they managed to careen around most of the country, from the mountains of Michoacan to the villages of Chiapas.

They took part in fiestas, descended into ancient burial vaults, and bought a silver dagger from a neighbor who may have been a witch but was certainly a dealer in stolen merchandise. Venturing into a culture which they knew nothing about, they tried to teach their maid how to deal with a faithless husband. Meanwhile the two attempted to record the quaint folkways of the mixed lot of American expatriates they had fallen into.

 Posted by at 12:26 pm

Village In The Sun by Dane Chandos (reprint by Tlayacapan Press, 1998)

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Jan 042014
 

Village In The Sun by Dane Chandos (reprint by Tlayacapan Press, 1998)

chandos-village-in-the-sunIn the early 1940s, an Englishman Dane Chandos (the pen name for a two-man writing team) decided to settle in a small village on Lake Chapala. This is a most welcome reprint of the much sought-after, highly entertaining account of his adventures during his first year in Mexico. As he builds his home, Chandos absorbs local customs while bonding with a colorful cast of characters. A delightful book!

Softcover, 259 pages. Dimensions (in inches): 8.3 x 5.45 x 0.6 Price: US$15.00 [plus shipping – contact us for details]

Written in the early 1940s, Village In The Sun is still considered to be one of the most endearing books written about Mexico to this day. Set in the area of Ajijic, Jalisco, it gives a delightful view of the Mexicans and their culture without criticism and judgment. The story is a most entertaining month-by-month account of an Englishman weathering his first year in Ajijic. It is written in a time when the road from Chapala to Jocotepec was a muddy trail and steam bed washouts were part of life during the rainy season. Ice was delivered by bus from Guadalajara, dropped off by the side of the road and left in the sun. In the process of building his house, the author gradually absorbs local customs while bonding with a colorful cast of characters.

Related books:

All three books “House in the Sun”, “Village in the Sun” and “Candelaria’s Cookbook” are delightful and essential reading for anyone who cares about the spirit of Mexico and its people. The sale of these books helps fund an educational program for young people living in the village of San Antonio Tlayacapan, where the books are set.

 Posted by at 12:26 pm

House In The Sun by Dane Chandos (reprint by Tlayacapan Press, 1999)

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Jan 042014
 

House In The Sun by Dane Chandos (reprint by Tlayacapan Press, 1999)

chandos-house-in-sunThis is the classic account of how an expatriate Englishman Dane Chandos (the pen name for a two-man writing team) ran an hotel in a Lake Chapala village fifty years ago – “a magical place where anything can happen–and frequently does!”.

Softcover, 246 pages. Dimensions (in inches): 8.3 x 5.45 x 0.6. Price: US$15.00 [plus shipping – contact us for details]

“The house which he was building in Ajijic, on Lake Chapala, south of Guadalajara, is now nearing completion and, at the time of which he writes, is converted to a small inn taking a few paying guests. Here, Dane Chandos unfolds his day-to-day adventures as “Señor of the Inn,” an amateur hotelier who is at the mercy of both his loyal, unpredictable and often maddening servants, and of his equally unpredictable and maddening – though never boring – guests. All this is set forth with tender understanding and captivating wit against the background of the primitive little village which lies “between the lake and the paws of the mountains,” where anything can happen.” (review by Alan Cogan)

House In The Sun has more descriptive details about Mexico than the previous book by Dane Chandos – Village In The Sun  – as the author occasionally takes his guests on sightseeing trips including a pilgrimage to the Virgin of Zapopan, a canoa trip around the lake, and a drive to Uruapan to see the still-erupting volcano at Paricutin.

Related books:

All three books “House in the Sun”, “Village in the Sun” and “Candelaria’s Cookbook” are delightful and essential reading for anyone who cares about the spirit of Mexico and its people. The sale of these books helps fund an educational program for young people living in the village of San Antonio Tlayacapan, where the books are set.

 Posted by at 12:26 pm

Order Sombrero Books via Amazon.com and Amazon.ca

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Nov 012013
 

Give a book!. The Kindle editions of

are only a click away. The recipient will have the book within minutes!!

For Kobo enthusiasts,

Regular softcover versions of both books are available via amazon.com and amazon.ca

 

 Posted by at 9:33 am

Mascota (Editorial Agata, Fotoglobo, 2003)

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Jan 182013
 

Mascota (Editorial Agata, Fotoglobo, 2003)

mascotaFotografias del pueblo de Mascota. Fascinante.

Photographs of the town of Mascota in Jalisco, accompanied by short captions/text (in Spanish). Fascinating way to look at history!

Softcover, 120 pages. Language: Spanish. Dimensions (in inches): 10.7 x 8.0 x 0.25; ISBN: 970-657-125-6

Price: US$15.00 (plus shipping, contact us for details)

 Posted by at 10:01 am

Purchase some of our titles via Amazon.ca

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Sep 142012
 

Several of our books, as well as our Lake Chapala Map Set, can now be purchased via amazon.ca [they have always been available via the US site amazon.com]
We don’t make as much from each book as if you bought it direct, but, hey, on the other hand you have the chance of discounts and free shipping on most items!

Happy shopping!           Sombrero Books

Links to our amazon.ca products:

Geo-Mexico, the geography and dynamics of modern Mexico

Western Mexico, a Traveller’s Treasury

Lake Chapala Through the Ages, an anthology of travellers’ tales

Lake Chapala Map Set

and

El Occidente de México, un tesoro para el viajero [translation of Western Mexico, a Traveller’s Treasury]. Buy both versions, English and Spanish, for an inexpensive way to build your Spanish vocabulary and increase your fluency!

 Posted by at 6:15 pm

Burton, Tony

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Mar 222012
 

Tony Burton (1953-) is an author and translator, born in the UK who lived full-time in Mexico for about 18 years and now resides on Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada.

His books include Western Mexico: A Traveler’s Treasury (4rd edition, 2013, Sombrero Books); previous editions 1993, 1997, 2001; Geo-Mexico: the geography and dynamics of modern Mexico (co-authored with Richard Rhoda, 2010, Sombrero Books);  Lake Chapala Through The Ages; an anthology of travellers’ tales. (2008, Sombrero Books), El Occidente de México; un tesoro para el viajero (translation by Lorenza Castiello V. of 3rd edition of Western Mexico: A Traveler’s Treasury, 2004, Sombrero Books). His cartography includes Lake Chapala Map Set (2010, Sombrero Books).

He has contributed chapters to many books, including “Recreación y turismo en la cuenca Lerma-Chapala” (Recreation and Tourism in the Lerma-Chapala Basin) in La cuenca Lerma-Chapala. Un Atlas sobre el ambiente, su gente y los recursos (Mexico: INE/UNAM/CONACYT,  2006); “Climate and Geography” in Mexico’s Lake Chapala & Ajijic. The Insider’s Guide, by Teresa Kendrick. (Austin, Texas: MTI, 2000, 2005); “Chapala, Ajijic, Jocotepec” in Traveler’s Guide to Mexico (1997); “Fascinating scenery of Western Mexico’s “Volcanic Belt”, and “Snowbirds and Butterflies” in Mexico Living and Travel by Jean and John Bryant. (California: MRTA, 1994); “Enjoying Jalisco”, chapter 13 of Retiring to Mexico, edited by Nellie and Len Friedman (Indianapolis: ACC books, 1992).

He has also given numerous lectures, workshops and has written several academic papers.

His translations include Paricutín, Fifty Years after its Birth (Guadalajara: Editorial Agata, 1993), which is Simón Lázaro Jimenez’s autobiographical account of the eruption of Paricutín volcano published on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of its eruption, and several other non-fiction works, including Wolfgang Vogt’s literary study Juan Rulfo and the South of Jalisco (Guadalajara: Editorial Agata, 1995); Espacios del lago de Chapala by Carlos Valencia Pelayo (Editorial Agata, 1998); A Drink Named Tequila. by José María Muriá (Editorial Agata, Guadalajara, 1996), Tonala Ceramics – Living Roots by Gutierre Aceves (Editorial Agata, 1994); Past Times in Chapala by Jesús González Gortázar (Editorial Agata, 1992); Maps and Charts of Mexico from the sixteenth century to the nineteenth century. Various authors. (INEGI/INAH, Mexico, 1988)

A Copper Canyon reading list

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Feb 162010
 

“A giant walked around and the ground cracked” (a Tarahumar legend explaining how the canyons were formed).

Mexico’s Copper Canyon is narrower, deeper and longer than the US Grand Canyon. The train ride from Los Mochis and El Fuerte to Divisadero, Creel and Chihuahua traverses the Western Sierra Madre with its imposing peaks and pine forests. This area is home to Mexico’s Tarahumar Indians, an indigenous group whose distinctive lifestyle has, thankfully, resisted many of the supposed allures of modern living.

This partial bibliography offers a varied selection of reading, both fiction and non-fiction, directly related to the Copper Canyon region and the Tarahumar people.

Alvarado, C.M. (1996) La Tarahumara: una tierra herida. Gobierno del Estado de Chihuahua. Somewhat repetitive academic analysis of the violence of the drug-producing zones in the state of Chihuahua, based in part on interviews with convicted felons.

Bennett, W. and Zingg, R. (1935) The Tarahumara. Univ. of Chicago Press. Reprinted by Rio Grande Press, 1976. Classic anthropological work.

Dunne, P.M. (1948) Early Jesuit Missions in Tarahumara. Univ. Calif. Press.

Fisher, R.D. (1988) National Parks of Northwest Mexico II. Sunracer Publications, Tucson, Arizona. Fisher is the author of numerous well illustrated works about the Canyon region.

Fontana, B.L. (1979) Where night is the day of the moon. Northland Press, Flagstaff, Arizona. Very colorful and interesting.

Gajdusek, D.C. (1953) “The Sierra Tarahumara” in Geographical Review, New York. 43: 15-38

Johnson, P.W. (1965) A Field Guide to the Gems and Minerals of Mexico. Gembooks, Mentone, California.

Kennedy, J.G. (1978) Tarahumara of the Sierra Madre; Beer, Ecology and Social Organization, AHM Publishing Corp, Arlington Heights, Illinois. Republished, as The Tarahumara of the Sierra Madre: Survivors on the Canyon’s Edge in 1996. – interesting account by an anthropologist who lived in one of the more remote Tarahumar areas for several months, accompanied by his wife and infant daughter. Kennedy also co-authored with Raul A. Lopez Semana Santa in the Sierra Tarahumara. A comparitive study in three communities. Museum of Cultural History, UCLA.

Kerr, J.L (1968) Destination Topolobampo: The Kansas City, Mexico and Orient Railroad, Golden West Books, San Marino, California. Difficult to find account of the railroad itself.

Lartigue, F. (1970) Indios y bosques. Políticas forestales y comunales en la Sierra Tarahumara. Edicions de la Casa Chata # 19, Mexico.

Lumholtz, C. (1902) Unknown Mexico. 2 volumes. Scribner’s Sons, New York. Republished in both English and Spanish. Fascinating ethnographic account from the last century.

Merrill, W.L. (1988) Raramuri Souls – Knowledge and Social Progress in North Mexico. Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C.

Nauman, T. (1997) “Tala ilegal para la siembra de mariguana y opio en Chihuahua” p. 50 in El Financiero, May 12, 1997. Describes the Arareko project.

Norman, James (1976) “The Tarahumaras: Mexico’s Long Distance Runners” in National Geographic, May 1976. pp 702-718

Pennington, C. (1963) The Tarahumar of Mexico, their environment and material culture. Univ. of Utah Press. Reprinted by Editorial Agata, Guadalajara, 1996. Another classic account of Tarahumar life and culture. The reprint has additional color photographs, taken by Luis Verplancken, S.J., who has run the mission in Creel for many years.

Plancarte, F. (1954) El problema indígena tarahumara. INI. Mexico. Spanish language description published by National Indigenous Institute.

Robertson, T.A. (1964) A Southwestern Utopia. An American Colony in Mexico. Ward Ritchie, Los Angeles. This describes the early history of Los Mochis and surrounding area.

Roca, P.M. (1979) Spanish Jesuit Churches in Mexico’s Tarahumara. Univ. of Arizona.

Salopek, Paul (1996) “Sierra Madre – Backbone of the Frontier” in National Geographic, August 1996.

Schmidt, R.H. (1973) A Geographical Survey of Chihuahua, monograph #37 Texas Western Press.

Shepherd, G. (1938) The Silver Magnet. E.P.Dutton, New York. The story of Batopilas mining town.

Shoumatoff, A. (1995) “The Hero of the Sierra Madre” pp 90 – 99 of Utne Reader (July-August, 1995), reprinted from Outside (March 1995). An account of the determined efforts by Edwin Bustillos to prevent further environmental destruction in the Copper Canyon region.

Spicer, E. (1969) “Northwest Mexico: Introduction” in Handbook of Middle American Indians vol.8, Ethnology part II. Univ. of Texas Press.

Vatant, Francoise. La explotación forestal y la producción doméstica tarahumara. Un estudio de caso: Cusárare, 1975-1976. INAH, Mexico.

Villaseñor, Victor (1992) Rain of gold. Delta. A Mexican-American novel based on family tale of dreams, mines and wealth and Revolution.